I’ve been reading John Dvorak‘s IT opinion pieces since the early 1980′s. He’s always entertaining, and frequently provocative, if not always right.
This week he posted a piece where he extrapolates from browser statistics to conclude that the Macintosh platform is irrelevant and doomed in the marketplace.
You can choose to agree or not with his conclusions, but he’s got his data sources confused.
In the piece he says he’s using data from the W3C, the World Wide Web Consortium founded by Tim Berners-Lee and others. The W3C is a highly respected organization that develops and maintains standards for the Web.
But the statistics Dvorak links to are actually from w3schools, a site of web tutorials owned and maintained by Refnes Data, a Norwegian software development and consulting company. The w3schools web browser statistics are derived from the log files of their particular site. While these might be globally indicative of browser and platform market share, there’s no guarantee that this is an accurate inference.
I don’t know about you, but I’m leery of opinions expounded loudly by people who can’t properly identify their data sources.
And, interestingly enough, the w3schools stats show a significant increase in Mac market share – from 1.8% in March of 2003 to 2.7% in December 2004. That’s a pretty dramatic increase if it’s indicative of global trends.
Perhaps more interesting is the growth of the Mozilla browser use to over 21 percent. Now that’s impressive!